`Meatless Mondays` - Guarantee one vegetable heavy day


Vegan Ratatouille

It's common to hear the recommendation that fish be part of a diet three times a week.  But what about "Meatless Mondays"?  Getting the recommended amount of vegetable and fruit servings each day of each week is tough for busy people, and making one day's meals revolve around fruits and vegetables are a great way to add more to the diet.

Vegetarian and vegan does not indicate healthy anymore than the "natural" designation does on packaged foods.  Pre-made vegetarian and vegan foods have many of the same pitfalls as the rest of packaged foods.  In fact, Oreos are a famously vegan option.  Vegetarian and vegan menus have to be as carefully managed as that of the carnivore, and foods should be fresh and prepared at home as opposed to prepackaged for the same reasons.  Vegetarian and vegan options can be packed with carbohydrates and unhealthy fats as easily as their omnivore counterparts.

What meatless Mondays does offer, on top of being vegetable heavy, is a chance to try out various vegetarian or vegan staples and cooking techniques.  Far more than just making smoothies or eating salads, these cuisine categories have their own cooking techniques and flavor stars.  Foods like tempeh, miso, and tofu have an entirely different set of flavors and textures to offer, and can be used in so many different ways, many of which the average carnivore would never come across on their normal food journeys.  Techniques like using nut milks in the place of dairy offer a whole different set of culinary options that some may even prefer. 

Meatless Mondays offer another way to explore healthy food options.  A word of caution:  vegetarian and vegan recipes often fail to satisfy when they mean to create a meat substitute.  On the other hand, they shine when they highlight the natural goodness that vegetables and whole grains have to offer.  

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